New A2 1.6 FSI SE owner

Dave Kelas

Member
Greetings, fellow A2 enthusiasts! I bought my '03 1.6 just yesterday from a used car dealer 60 miles from me. It was the only A2 for sale in Northern Ireland. It does have a full service history and has had the timing chain and tensioner replaced 2 years ago. It needs 4 new discs and I'll do an oil change at the same time.

The only fault I've discovered is a leak from the expansion tank area. The hoses look ok and it's only losing around 100ml so I suspect the tank cap may not be sealing properly. Does anyone have any experience with this?

On a plus point I averaged exactly 50mpg on the way home, 50% motorway at 75mph and 50% A road 50mph. I drove to the garage in a Honda Jazz 1.4 and it only managed 44mpg

After I did the deal I drove to Portstewart strand 6 miles away and caught the last half of the Airwaves airshow and took some photos of my baby :)

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sco

A2OC Donor
Welcome Dave. Worth getting on top of the coolant loss sooner rather than later in case it is the pipe of death.

Simon.
 

Andrew

A2OC Donor
Morning Dave,

Faulty sealing expansion tank cap is common enough, just buy new to rule it out. Hair line cracks in the tank is another possibility. I have a vague memory of the AA (Ithink) locating a crack in a member's tank with some kind of smoke test. A new tank is not expensive.

Andy
 

Dave Kelas

Member
Welcome Dave. Worth getting on top of the coolant loss sooner rather than later in case it is the pipe of death.

Simon.
I assume you mean the dreaded Y pipe. It seems to cause catastrophic coolant loss. I'll check it out though :)
 

Dave Kelas

Member
Morning Dave,

Faulty sealing expansion tank cap is common enough, just buy new to rule it out. Hair line cracks in the tank is another possibility. I have a vague memory of the AA (Ithink) locating a crack in a member's tank with some kind of smoke test. A new tank is not expensive.

Andy
The tank is quite yellowed so that is a possibility. It's a common problem with my other car, an '03 Porsche 986. Thankfully the A2 one is a lot easier to replace :D
 

Dave Kelas

Member
Welcome Dave

The 'Death Pipe' is round the back of the engine, this thread explains the issue:
You guys are awesome! I'm so happy to be back with VAG again. My last 2 'normal' cars were Nissan and Honda, basically because they were cheap. The A2 is on a whole other level compared to them. Build quality is on par with Porsche of the same year
 

depronman

A2OC Donor
Dave,
Its a bit like changing the water pump when you do the timing belt on these engines, done as a preventative measure, but I understand the FSI runs hotter than most engines and this pipe when it fails dumps all the coolant out in a matter of seconds = fried engine hence the name 'death pipe'
 

Andrew

A2OC Donor
Let's not get carried away with the the overly dramatically named death pipe, come back to this in a minute, but Dave's words from the opening post...

"The only fault I've discovered is a leak from the expansion tank area."

A leak from the coolant tank area is nothing to do with the death pipe, most likely something far more mundane, [Except for possibly a leaking head gasket causing excessive high coolant pressure, which vents by weeping at the coolant bottle. Car come with any warranty?]

The design working temperature of the FSI is 110°C, higher than normal, which experience suggests causes the death pipe to become brittle and crack with age, by repute failing with dramatic consequences. I think the truth is nearer to my experience of a mysterious small coolant loss, which progressively got worse over 4 year until it went nova! [Incidently the 1.4 petrol has the identical pipe but no reputation]. It is therefore considered good preventative maintenance to replace the coolant pipe if it is original or older than say 8 years (the pipe is normally date stamped), however it is a bit of pig to replace, and usually left until the inllet manifold work is undertaken, which you will need at some point unless another notorious problem has been dealt with!!! What is the mileage?

I forgot to say welcome earlier, welcome.

Andy
 

Dave Kelas

Member
Let's not get carried away with the the overly dramatically named death pipe, come back to this in a minute, but Dave's words from the opening post...

"The only fault I've discovered is a leak from the expansion tank area."

A leak from the coolant tank area is nothing to do with the death pipe, most likely something far more mundane, [Except for possibly a leaking head gasket causing excessive high coolant pressure, which vents by weeping at the coolant bottle. Car come with any warranty?]

The design working temperature of the FSI is 110°C, higher than normal, which experience suggests causes the death pipe to become brittle and crack with age, by repute failing with dramatic consequences. I think the truth is nearer to my experience of a mysterious small coolant loss, which progressively got worse over 4 year until it went nova! [Incidently the 1.4 petrol has the identical pipe but no reputation]. It is therefore considered good preventative maintenance to replace the coolant pipe if it is original or older than say 8 years (the pipe is normally date stamped), however it is a bit of pig to replace, and usually left until the inllet manifold work is undertaken, which you will need at some point unless another notorious problem has been dealt with!!! What is the mileage?

I forgot to say welcome earlier, welcome.

Andy
I know it has nothing to do with the pipe. It has 107k miles. I noticed a very small damp patch directly under the expansion tank and some coolant pooled on the engine mount on that side but it took about a small cupful of water to bring the level back up to full. I drove the car for 80 miles after that with no apparent leakage so I doubt it's the head gasket. I'll start with a new tan cap and see how it goes from there. Luckily I pass the Audi Dealer on my way home from work.

Every car has to have a 'death' something or other lol. My other car has the 'dreaded' Intermediate Shaft Bearing of death which kills 4% of them :D
 

Andrew

A2OC Donor
I know it has nothing to do with the pipe. It has 107k miles. I noticed a very small damp patch directly under the expansion tank and some coolant pooled on the engine mount on that side but it took about a small cupful of water to bring the level back up to full. I drove the car for 80 miles after that with no apparent leakage so I doubt it's the head gasket. I'll start with a new tan cap and see how it goes from there. Luckily I pass the Audi Dealer on my way home from work.

Every car has to have a 'death' something or other lol. My other car has the 'dreaded' Intermediate Shaft Bearing of death which kills 4% of them :D
Oh dear, did you say water! - Andy
 

Dave Kelas

Member
Oh dear, did you say water! - Andy
😄 Actually it was the guy I bought it off and yes, he used water but I wasn't bothered. I could see coolant in the tank so I knew it wouldn't take much and a cupful won't hurt the concentration of the coolant. I plan to go and buy a bottle of concentrated coolant just as soon as bloody Amazon arrives with my parcel that I missed yesterday because I was off getting my new toy :D
 
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